Damp and mould in your home is unpleasant and can be bad for your health and wellbeing. It can be worse during the winter when the weather is cold and wet. This year, many people are worried about the cost of living, including paying for their gas and electric. If you're worried, please talk to us - support is available:
We don’t want anyone to be living in a home with damp and mould and there are things we can all do to prevent and deal with it.
We’ve recently worked closely with tenants to co-produce a robust action plan which sets out what we’re doing to tackle the causes of damp and mould, and how we respond to instances that have progressed and require repair.
We treat damp and mould requests as priority inspections, so please report any concerns to us by using our eform here or phone us on 01226 787878.
Always remember 'STAR':
It's important to know what to look out for in your home so you can spot the signs that there might be a problem with damp and mould.
The first sign that there might be a problem in your home is misting and water droplets on windows and other cold surfaces that takes a long time to disappear.
The second sign is patches of black mould growing on your walls and ceilings.
Damp caused by faulty plumbing
A leak from a toilet, shower, sink, or pipe can affect internal walls and ceilings. Damp from faulty plumbing will appear as an obvious damp patch no matter what the weather is like outside. It may get worse after a certain utility is used, for example when the shower is turned on or the toilet is flushed.
If you think you might have a leak, check around the water and waste pipes inside your home, the seals around the bath, shower, and sinks, and any external pipework, such as guttering.
Black mould rarely appears with this type of dampness because the area is usually too wet. Chemicals in waste water will also prevent mould from growing.
Penetrating damp is found on external walls and ceilings. It’s caused by water passing through a building defect and will appear as an obvious damp patch, particularly after rainfall. It will dry out as the weather improves.
Penetrating damp can be caused by a number of repair problems, for example:
Black mould rarely appears on areas of penetrating damp. This is because the affected area is usually too wet and the water contains salt picked up when passing through the wall, which prevents growth.
Rising damp is more common in older properties. It generally affects the lower part of the ground floor of a property up to the height of about 1 metre. It can look like a white ‘tide mark’ low down on the wall.
Black mould doesn’t usually come from rising damp as just like with penetrating damp, the water contains salt picked up when passing through the wall, which prevents growth.
Most black mould growth is a result of condensation. Condensation is caused by water vapour or moisture inside the home coming into contact with a colder surface, such as a window or wall. It happens mainly during the colder months, whether it’s rainy or dry outside.
Condensation in the home is caused by three things:
How condensation can lead to mould growth
Condensation is usually found in the corners of rooms, on walls that face north, and on or near windows. It can also be found in areas where there’s little ventilation and air circulation, including behind wardrobes and beds, especially when they are pushed up against external walls. The water droplets soak into the wallpaper, paintwork or plaster, and in time, black mould can grow on the surface of the damp areas.
For mould to thrive and survive it needs:
By dealing with the causes of condensation, you’ll automatically deal with the problem of mould. The good news is there are steps you can take to reduce condensation in your home.
Try these tips to reduce condensation and black mould in your home:
Windows and doors
Furniture and room layout
Extractor fans are most found in bathrooms and kitchens to help draw air outside, keeping your air quality fresh.
They help reduce the chance of condensation in the home due to everyday activities like cooking and bathing or showering by letting out a steady stream of air and allowing moisture to escape from the room.
If your property has extractor fans fitted, it’s important to leave them switched on.
We know the rising cost of living has made many people worried about paying their bills. If you’re worried about money and heating your home this winter, please contact our Tenants First team on 01226 787878 or complete the form below.
There’s help and support available during the cost of living crisis, including our warm and welcoming spaces.
As soon as you spot a problem with condensation, damp, or mould – follow our tips and see if things improve.
You don’t need to leave the mould in place for us to see when we inspect your home.
Safely removing mould
If the area is less than ten square metres, you can safely clean the mould by following these steps:
If a damp or mould problem doesn’t go away when you’ve tried our tips or you’re worried about it getting worse – report it to us.
If you don't know what's causing damp and mould in your home, or you think the problem is being caused by something that needs repairing, let us know as soon as possible.
10th floor, Gateway Plaza, off Sackville St, Barnsley, South Yorkshire, S70 2RD
Berneslai Homes Limited is a company controlled by Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council. A company limited by guarantee, registered in England and Wales, number 4548803